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Warning: The following story contains spoilers for the Season 6 premiere of The Blacklist, called "Dr. Hans Koehler (#33)," below.
The Blacklist Season 6 got off to a roaring start with a bank heist to get things moving. Liz's investigation into Red's origins was the main thrust of the hour though. As fans know, she and the original Raymond Reddington's daughter, Jennifer, are on the warpath.
The Blacklist gave viewers hints about current Red's past, as well as making one crucial reveal that left four questions in its wake. Current Red used the services of a top-notch plastic surgeon, who could completely alter a face. Time for the first question.
Did Red completely change his face?
There was confirmation that Red used the services of a storied plastic surgeon, who was also the Season 6 premiere's featured blacklister. To what extent is the real question. While Liz seemed to believe Red's face is the result of an all-encompassing makeover, there is another potential explanation.
What if current Red is in possession of his original face and used the plastic surgeon to work on the burns he sustained in the fire? As revealed in a previous season, current Red has burn scars on his back. So, it seems entirely feasible he needed Dr. Koehler to help treat burns he sustained elsewhere.
Is it still possible that the current Red is the dead Red's twin brother?
That would seem to still be a viable option. Just because Red had plastic surgery does not mean he was in need of a lot of it. Even if he did, that does not rule out the potential of the imposter and Raymond Reddington being twins.
Red could be the original Reddington's fraternal twin brother, instead of his identical one. That would explain why some slight tweaks to his appearance needed to be made to assume Raymond Reddington's identity.
Is the imposter a better Red than the original guy?
One aspect of Liz's behavior that grew increasingly upsetting in The Blacklist's Season 6 premiere was her deification of the original Red. She told Jennifer that the reason she shot him when she was a child was that he was getting physical with her mom. That folds in with the story Ian Garvey told Jennifer about Raymond Reddington being violent.
All of which indicates that dead Red was far from the saint Liz and her sister are now making him out to be. How Liz is missing that connection is hard to understand. Maybe it is not current Red who is the "evil" twin. Perhaps it is the original. It would explain a lot.
Could the current Red still be Liz's father?
For me, it is still worth considering that current Red could be Liz's biological father. The Blacklist seems to be taking viewers away from this conclusion. However, there is a lot of evidence that keeps that possible, although that window is narrowing. Current Red's soft spot for Liz is tough to explain without it.
This takes viewers back to earlier seasons when he told Liz she killed her father and at one point denied being her biological father. Was he telling the truth when he said those things?
He may be Liz's uncle and not her father. If that is the case, why does "the imposter" seem to care more for Liz than Jennifer?
In the Season 6 premiere, he talked about how important his and Liz's relationship is to him. Red reiterated that he did not want to push her away. He also seemed to make a distinction between secrets and deception. He reasserted that when it came to Liz, he did not lie.
It is also possible that Liz's mother was with both of the Reddingtons, and current Red did not know if either he or his brother is Liz's biological father. He only knew he was related to her. That still brings up the issue that is his disinterest in Jennifer. He clearly cared for Liz's mother, which may be the key to solving that dilemma.
The Season 6 premiere did not hint at where Season 6 will ultimately take Red. A relief, since seeing Red in the outside world is always a blast. The premiere proved to be another entertaining episode of the series.
It was tough to see Liz continuing to act so cold towards Red. That is something the season will hopefully fix as it moves forward. The Season 6 premiere is a strong indication that fans are in for another terrific season of the show.